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What type of resolution does the Attorney General's Office seek under Consumer Protection laws?

Posted by Clyde Hutchins | Jul 19, 2016 | 0 Comments

When the Attorney General's Office takes enforcement action against a company or business owner under consumer protection law, it is usually seeking to obtain one or more of the following: civil penalties, consumer refunds or changes to the allegedly unlawful business practices. These remedies are all provided for in state law. However, the Attorney General's Office has discretion in choosing which remedies to attempt to impose on a company.

Civil penalties are allowed by state law for each violation and are capped. Enhanced civil penalties may be sought in some instances (i.e. in certain situations with older people). Civil penalties are paid to the state. (In Wyoming civil penalties can be up to $10,000 per violation. In Colorado civil penalties can be up to $2,000 per violation.)

The Attorney General's Office may seek consumer refunds or restitution. This usually entails refunding the consumers who were allegedly harmed by the deceptive trade practice.

The Attorney General's Office typically seeks to reform the alleged offending business practices. This remedy entails implementation of a negotiated binding agreement or a court order that describes the remedial actions or reforms required to comply with the consumer protection laws.

If you or your company is under investigation by the Attorney General's Office, please feel free to contact Harmony Law to see if we can assist in dealing with the Attorney General's Office.

About the Author

Clyde Hutchins

Clyde Hutchins is the founder of Harmony Law. Prior to opening Harmony Law, Mr. Hutchins worked in the Wyoming Attorney General's Office for several years where he developed a strong consumer protection enforcement unit. In that position he led over 120 investigations and enforcement actions under the Consumer Protection Act. He worked on numerous joint cases with the Federal Trade Commission and other states, including Colorado, on consumer protection matters. Mr. Hutchins is also a contributing author to Consumer Protection Law Developments, Second Edition. Previous to his work in the Attorney General's Office, Mr. Hutchins was in private practice in Anchorage, Alaska where he was the chief litigator for a firm. Mr. Hutchins represented municipalities on various matters. Mr. Hutchins provided counsel to businesses and investment advisors regarding compliance with securities laws. He was also a bond lawyer and worked on municipal financing matters. Prior to that, Mr. Hutchins practiced civil litigation with a law firm in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Mr. Hutchins devotes his spare time to his family, traveling and enjoying the great outdoors.

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Harmony Law is one of the few law firms in Colorado and Wyoming that focuses on consumer law. Mr. Hutchins is a member of the National Association of Consumer Advocates and state chair for Wyoming. If you have a consumer law issue, please feel free to call 970-488-1857 and speak with Mr. Hutchins.

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